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Microsoft Businesses Windows IT

Microsoft Won't Bring Back the Start Menu Until 2015 516

DroidJason1 (3589319) writes "Microsoft recently announced plans to reintroduce the Start Menu to Windows in an upcoming version of the operating system. While the plan was to roll out an update to Windows 8.1 and offer the Start menu later this year, it seems like this is no longer the case. Now Microsoft is reportedly looking to release the Start Menu with Windows 9, which is expected in April of 2015. Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 have faced a boat load of criticism and hatred, partly due to the removal of the Start button and Start menu. The restoration of a visible Start button on the taskbar was one of the key features of the Windows 8.1 update, released back in October of 2013."
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Microsoft Won't Bring Back the Start Menu Until 2015

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  • by androidph ( 3631653 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:32PM (#47148193)
    I was forced to use Windows 8 because it's packaged in my new laptop, and a change in OS means I need to spend more money. So I gave it a try but I never liked it. I think, I might get used to it, if all the PCs I use (home/office/remote) are all Windows 8. If MS wants everybody to like Windows 8, they should have killed all other versions that uses the START button. i.e. Windows Update that automatically disables the start menu for Windows XP to Windows 7. Then everybody will be forced to grow accustomed to it.
  • Every Other OS (Score:5, Interesting)

    by meerling ( 1487879 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:32PM (#47148195)
    Microsoft seems to be intentionally upholding the old meme about 'every other OS released by Microsoft sucking'.

    After a while, you really have to wonder why they keep doing this.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:41PM (#47148273)

    When the start menu comes back, Microsoft will be giving Windows nine away for FREE. The difference is that they will have changed their business model, to one where you have so sign on the their own cloud computing in order to use it -for a monthly fee. Look at Nokia. Those phones will only be able to access the Microsoft cloud. So any organization that still uses windows will require all its staff to be issued with windows phones. A Win-win from Microsoft's point of view.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:45PM (#47148307)

    Windows 8 is shit, from top to bottom.

    Then how come the only criticism ever levied against it is the UI? Performance? Better than 7. Stability? Better than 7. Security? Better than 7. System requirements? Better than 7. The only thing you can legitimately criticize are subjective components like the interface, which some people like myself actually *prefer* to the start menu.

  • by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:46PM (#47148319) Journal

    No flames here. For any new OS Microsoft craps out, there will be people forced for various reasons to try to live with it. That you managed to do so is more a credit to you than to Microsoft.

    That said, the solution for me was a system restore to Windows 7, and Windows 8 goes back on the shelf until... 2015 I guess. But I can see where there are some cases where that isn't possible.

    (And yes, I know there's third party solutions to many of Windows 8's issues... but like you, I have to get work done.)

  • I don't understand (Score:5, Interesting)

    by xfizik ( 3491039 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:48PM (#47148333)
    One thing about Microsoft that I don't understand is its seeming slowness at doing simple things. OK, everyone agrees there has to be a Start Menu, it is not hard to implement (see lots of 3rd party apps doing just that), it will not break any existing Windows functionality, MS has virtually unlimited highly skilled resources, yet this obvious simple improvement takes months (if not years) to release. Let alone the fact that this problem should never have existed in the first place.
  • Re:Every Other OS (Score:2, Interesting)

    by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @02:54PM (#47148389) Journal

    Publicists usually say that any kind of buzz is good for business.

    And they know people are going to buy it. When J. Random User with $400 walks into a store and wants to buy a laptop, does (s)he have any other choice?

    Sure. Buy a mac. And I'm saying that as someone who thinks macs are overpriced trendy hipster-ware. Besides all the shiny marketing, they are admittedly designed with usability in mind, which Microsoft seems to have forgotten how to do.

    I'm still using Windows 7, but if M$ hasn't gotten their act together by the time it reaches EOL, I'm actively considering jumping ship. Apple runs the apps I need. (If Linux did, I'd use that instead, but they don't yet.)

  • by Jeff Flanagan ( 2981883 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @03:19PM (#47148651)
    It's not at all bad once you install Classic Shell and disable Metro. It's still totally insane that we need to install a 3rd party tool to make the OS usable, but 8 is far superior to 7 once you install Classic Shell.
  • by MyNicknameSucks ( 1952390 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @04:02PM (#47149089)

    Long version: see pwnies' (IU designer at MS) posts at reddit, like this one: []

    Metro has 2 UIs: Metro for casual use; classic for power users / production. MS wasn't particularly clear on the split and made it seem like Metro was the only UI going forward with classic atrophying in the background. That, apparently, is not the case. But MS pulled a boner here and mis-sold the UI.

    It was always easy enough to restore the old school start button with either Start8 or a handful of free utilities. But ... you had to go and find them. MS was hoping that was just enough hassle that casual users would stick with Metro. So ... casual users get a UI optimized for touch and keyboard (alt-f4 to close windows; alt-tab to switch; win-w to search settings; win-s for searching docs / the web / whatever; type to find apps). Further, the included apps tend to be basic ("dumbed down") so that your grandpa can figure them out. Metro is also optimized around the idea of single-and double-tasking (i.e., media consumption). Metro isn't made for your typical /. user.

    Classic is for people with multiple windows open, Office users, and so on -- those who can find OS settings and utilities (I think MS' definition of power user might have been overly generous).

    Metro is really, really good for what it is. Once you grok the keyboard shortcuts or the gestures (swipe from the sides to make stuff happen), it's actually pretty cool.

    What MS screwed up is not the UIs, but, rather, how they interact with each other. With release-era 8, if you opened, say, the picture viewer from classic, it punted you into full-screen Metro. Ditto for the calculator (true story, needed to check some math for an email, opened the calculator, and was presented with a full screen, 22" four function calculator -- that's just stupid). Some settings are accessible only through Metro (again, that's stupid -- hiding settings casual users shouldn't need to touch in Metro was bad design). Some default associations, like those for RAW photos, can only be set through Explorer if you want to use the classic app -- the Set Associations app only shows the Metro viewer as being available for those types. And so on. And forth.

    As for the Start menu? It's easy enough to get back ... but I'm torn. I don't honestly use it all that often since I read about hitting the win key then typing the name of what I wanted. It's ... different than using the mouse. But, most of the time, it's also faster than going through nested menus.

    Win8 is flawed. And weird. And occasionally antagonistic. And the dual UI aspect was very, very poorly handled. But its bones are good (fast, stable, secure). I like Win8, but it seemed to take longer to properly set up my desktop than it should've (Modern Mix also helps to control full-screen app pop-ups by running Metro apps windowed).

  • by GonzoPhysicist ( 1231558 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @07:41PM (#47150855)
    The most glaring example of this to me is the default setting of "hide extensions for known file types". I think it first showed up in XP, but why would you ever want that turned on?
  • by aeosrh oseihtnewa ( 3679151 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @08:39PM (#47151217)

    The ribbon gui in msoffice drove many people to switch to LibreOffice.

    Given the proportion in market share between Open/LibreOffice and MS Office, by "many" you mean something like 0.1%?

    LibreOffice didn't exist before the stupid ribbon gui was launched. Today million users use LibreOffice instead of propriety msoffice, more like 10-20% market share. And most of the people still forced to use msoffice hate the ribbon gui. Still HATE it.

    The missing start menu drove many people to switch to Linux.

    See above.

    (in practice, most people who don't like the new Win8 UI just stay on Win7)

    Windows8 is preinstalled to a larger degree than msoffice is. Ordinary people cannot be bothered to reinstall windows7.

    The destruction of win32 (a good API in it's time) drove many developers to switch to Linux/posix.

    What destruction? You can still take a program written against Win32 API as it was in NT 3.1, recompile it, and it'll run on Win8. Heck, you don't even have to recompile if the architecture matches.

    win64 was a lost opportunity to fix win32 and make it good, instead we got "win32 for 64-bit windows", which is stupid and wrong. MS got cold feet, marketed other technologies as .net instead of making win32 the best system api. Now 64-bit posix is a much better choice. Because 64-bit is on every system today, embedded, mobile, desktop, servers. Having a 32-bit api when using 64-bit hardware sucks.

  • by penix1 ( 722987 ) on Monday June 02, 2014 @08:56PM (#47151335) Homepage

    Dont get me wrong, the Metro interface is a serious PITA.

    But seriously? In a lot of other ways, Win8 is just better than Win7, and theres ClassicShell to remove the one piece thats seriously annoying.

    Honestly the only bit thats a real problem is the lack of OEM reinstall options. If everyone here is getting their pants in a bunch over a button thats seriously disappointing.

    OK. I'll take this on...

    You acknowledge that the interface is a serious PITA. So what does Microsoft do to resolve the issues people have with it? They move the charm from the lower left corner in 8.0 to the task bar in 8.1 that only takes you back to the interface that is a PITA. They did it thinking people were getting lost and had no easy way back to the start screen when the truth is people hated that start screen.

    And shoehorning classic shell to the interface, although it is one solution, is a risk being a program you have to download and trust you got it from the right source and it won't harm your system in some weird way. I've had issues with it sporadically creating runaway processes that eat up processor cycles until killed.

    Lastly, name one area where 8 is better than 7. Don't say tablet features because I had a tablet running 7 fine with all the touch features of 8 and then some including multi-finger gesture recognition and stylus recognition with automatic switching between the two.

The best defense against logic is ignorance.